Milwaukee May Sell Certain Vacant Lots For $1

Jun 25, 2014

The program would start in the 15th Aldermanic District on the north side and expand, if successful.

Next door neighbors could buy that empty lot for a buck
Credit Michelle Maternowski

Under the pilot program, the city would offer each vacant residential lot it owns in Stamper's district, to the adjacent property owner for one dollar, provided that person is a City of Milwaukee resident.

Alderman Russell Stamper proposed the plan to help the city unload some of the 2,700 vacant residential lots it owns due to foreclosures and unpaid taxes. When the dwellings on them deteriorated or were used for criminal activity, the city demolished them. Fifteen percent of those lots are located in Stamper's 15th district.

The Common Council has approved his plan, now it's before Mayor Tom Barrett.

According to Stamper,  "there’s no reason that these parcels shouldn’t be turned over to responsible home owners, who will in turn be able to see to their upkeep and improve their neighborhoods.” He says the program could also help put properties back onto the city tax rolls.

If more than one neighbor is interested in a lot, the city could divide it.